SEYMOUR – Luke Gohmann has perfected the game-winning shot.
For the second game in a row, Gohmann buried a buzzer-beater to rescue Floyd Central, and this one counted more as his 18-footer from the left wing powered the Highlanders to a 39-38 victory over Seymour in the first round of the Class 4-A sectional tournament on Tuesday night.
The Highlanders (15-8) advanced to meet No. 1 New Albany (21-1) in the first semifinal on Friday night. In the second game, Jeffersonville avenged a regular-season loss with an emphatic 68-49 victory over Bedford North Lawrence. The Red Devils (14-11) moved on to meet Jennings County (8-14) in the semifinal round.
Gohmann was the go-to guy for the Highlanders. He drilled a shot to beat Columbus East 51-50 in the final game of the regular season on Friday, and he followed that with a clutch postseason jumper. Nothing to it.
“Occasionally at practice my dad will say ’OK, this is for a game-winner,’” Gohmann said. “I was really thinking I had to get this one for our seniors. It was a great feeling when it went in.”
Gohmann’s memorable moment capped Floyd Central’s rally from a 12-point deficit early in the third quarter. And it nearly duplicated the regular-season win over the Owls (6-17). Floyd Central won that one 33-31 on Matthew Weimer’s last-second shot.
The Highlanders trailed 38-37 with 17 seconds left but forced a turnover. Cobie Barnes’ drive to the rim was rejected with 4.4 seconds left, giving Floyd Central possession under the basket. The Highlanders freed Gohmann off a screen, and he drained the long jumper before walking coolly back to the other end, chased by giddy teammates.
“We were trying to get the ball in his hands,” Floyd Central coach Todd Sturgeon said. “But crying out loud, it’s one thing to say we’re going to get it to him and anther for him to make it. Guys play their entire lives and may never make game winners in back-to-back games. I’m thrilled to see a kid step up in a big moment like that.”
Getting to that moment appeared to be a long shot with Seymour dictating tempo. The Owls, paced by Toriek Miller’s 11 first-half points, worked patiently to a 20-12 lead in the second quarter, and Tyler Bloom’s corner three gave the Owls their biggest lead at 29-17 two minutes into the second half.
From that point, something clicked for the Highlanders.
“I don’t think it was any one thing,” Sturgeon said. “We started switching defenses, trying to find dome magic to get some stops.”
Floyd Central scored the final 9 points of the third quarter and finally took its first lead (33-32) since the first four minutes with Weimer’s 3-point play with 5:03 left. That set up back-and-forth exchanges, culminating with the Gohmann shot.
Miller had 16 points for Seymour, which was better than its deceiving record.
“Going into this thing, of course nobody wanted to draw New Albany,” Sturgeon said. “That’s a no-brainer. But it was unanimous that Seymour was the next team we didn’t want to play. They’re tough to play against, and Toriek Miller is tough for us to guard.”
Weimer paced Floyd Central with 9 points while Garrett Mehling added 7, all in the second half.
Jeffersonville 68, BNL 49: The Red Devils took control with a 13-0 run in the first quarter, and the Stars (14-11) could never get within striking range after that. Every time BNL cut the margin to single digits, the Devils had an answer while earning revenge for a 73-64 loss at home on Jan. 29.
This Jeffersonville team is totally different. Cam Northern makes that much of an impact.
Northern, a starter last season who missed the first 18 games of the year while recovering from a football-related injury, scored 14 points and was 7-for-7 from the field while also grabbing 8 rebounds. Brandon Coleman had 17 points.
“Cam Northern was a huge difference,” Jeffersonville coach Joe Luce said. “The things he does, from a standpoint of leadership and toughness, is hard to put into words. He’s a very good leader. That’s a special young man.”
Jeffersonville’s first-quarter burst was fueled by Coleman, who had a 3-pointer and a three-point play during the breakout.
“Brandon allows us to play at another level,” Luce said. “I thought our guys played with a lot of confidence. I thought we played well together. It really set a tone.”
Dechaun Lewis and Tommy Luce added 10 points each for the Devils.
Braxton Day, who had 32 against Jeffersonville the first time, paced the Stars with 17 points but hit only 4 of 14 shots. Isaiah Stockman had 12 points and Eli McPike (who had 25 in the first meeting) added 10.
Justin Sokeland can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Seymour (6-17): Ryan Wieneke 5, Tiller Cummings 7, Toriek Miller 16, Jordan Miller 4, Tyler Bloom 6.
Floyd Central (14-8): Cobie Barnes 2, Luke Gohmann 6, Trevor Apple 4, Tyler Kimm 6, Gerrett Mehling 7, Matthew Weimer 9, Connor Sturgeon 5.
3-point goals: Wieneke 1, T. Miller 1, Bloom 2, Mehling 1, Kimm 1.
|Bedford North Lawrence||6||9||17||17||—||49|
Bedford NL (14-11): Braxton Day 17, Isaiah Stockman 12, Eli McPike 10, Zach Tran 3, Corbin Cain 4, McCall Ray 3
Jeffersonville (14-11): Gerrin Moore 5, Dechaun Lewis 10, Brandon Coleman 17, Tommy Luce 10, Demarre Sims 7, Cam Northern 14, Michael Minton 3, Dominique Hunter 2.
3-point goals: Day 2, McPike 1, Tran 1, Ray 1, Moore 1, Coleman 1, Luce 1, Minton 1